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Death Penalty Case Reversed

Years ago, in Akey v Oklahoma, the Supreme Court established that when a poor defendant demonstrates that his sanity at the time of the offense will be a significant factor at trial, the state must provide him with an appropriate examination and assist in the evaluation preparation and presentation for the defense. In an unusual application of the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, the 2017 Supreme Court reversed an Alabama case death penalty case where the defendant was denied an expert mental health professional, holding that to deny the defendant mental health assistance in his capital case was an unreasonable application of Supreme Court law.

The United States Supreme Court reversed a number of Alabama death penalty cases over time.